Hours after chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said authorities will bring down the price of Covid-19 test by Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR), the Delhi government on Monday fixed the price of the test by private labs at Rs 800. The home collection of samples will cost Rs1,200. At present, people have to spend Rs 2,400 for the RT-PCR test at private labs.
CM Kejriwal had announced the move in a bid to help those who want their tests done in private labs, which are carried out free of cost at the government hospitals. “I have directed that the rates of RT PCR tests be reduced in Delhi. Whereas tests are being conducted free of cost in govt establishments, however this will help those who get their tests done in pvt labs,” Kejriwal had tweeted earlier on Monday.
Adopting an aggressive approach of contact tracing and testing, the Delhi government has carried out RT-PCR and Rapid Antigen Test to detect novel coronavirus in the national capital. Both tests are done free at government testing centres and hospitals, but not at private clinics or hospitals.
The government had earlier capped the price of all Covid-19 tests, whether from a government or private centre, in Delhi at Rs 2,400. The decision was taken in a District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) meeting chaired by Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, and attended by Kejriwal, deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia, revenue minister Kailash Gahlot and other top officials from the Delhi Police, administration and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
The move to cap the price of RT-PCR test comes as Covid-19 cases in Delhi have reached 5.6 lakh and death have crossed the 9,000 mark. Delhi on Sunday reported 4,906 new Covid-19 cases, taking the cumulative toll of positive cases reported so far this year to 5,66,648. In the last 24 hour, the national capital witnessed 68 deaths, adding to the total deaths. The city had recorded its highest single-day spike of 8,593 cases on November 11.